Read the most up-to-date research from survivors and supporters who want to end incest abuse, help survivors heal, and ensure that people who harm are not able to reoffend. From articles, to books, to podcasts, together we are speaking up and out to ensure children are safe in the homes. If you have any questions, please, reach out to an organization in the Incest AWARE Alliance.
Books, Articles & Podcasts.
The following resources have been recommended by survivors of incest and other forms of sexual trauma.
Books for Adults
Father-Daughter Incest (Judith Herman)
Ghosts in The Bedroom: A Guide for Partners of Incest Survivors (Ken Graber)
Healing the Adult Children of Narcissists: Essays on the Invisible War Zone and Exercises for Recovery (Shahida Arabi)
Healing Together: A Guide to Supporting Sexual Abuse Survivors (Anne Marie Miller)
Helping Your Child Recover From Sexual Abuse (Caren Adams and Jennifer J. Fay)
Incest AWARE Blog (Survivor writings and stories at IncestAWARE.org/blog)
I Never Told Anyone (Ellen Bass and Louise Thornton)
Listen to the Cry of the Child: The Deafening Silence of Sexual Abuse (Barbara J. Hansen)
Miss America by Day (Marilyn Van Derbur)
Practical Tools to Resist Sexism and Dismantle the Patriarchy (Joanne Bagshaw)
Prosecuted But Not Silenced: Courtroom Reform for Sexually Abused Children (Maralee McLean)
Secret Survivors: Uncovering Incest and Its Aftereffects in Women (E. Sue Blume)
Silently Seduced: When Parents Make Their Children Partners (Kenneth M. Adams)
The Beheaded Goddess: Daughters of Narcissistic Fathers (Selma Nemer)
The Body Keeps the Score (Bessel Van Der Kolk)
The Courage to Heal (Ellen Bass and Laura Davis)
There is Nothing to Fix: Becoming Whole Through Radical Self-Acceptance (Suzanne Jones) The Secret Trauma: Incest in the Lives of Girls and Women (Diana E.H. Russell)
Things We Haven’t Said: Sexual Violence Survivors Speak Out (Erin Moulton)
Trauma and Recovery (Judith Herman)
Victims No Longer: Men Recovering from Incest and Other Child Sexual Abuse (Mike Lew)
Voices in the Night: Women Speaking About Incest (Toni McNaron and Yarrow Morgan)
You Can Help: A Guide for Family & Friends of Survivors of Sexual Abuse and Assault (Rebecca Street)
Books for Children
Very few childrens’ books are written specifically with incest in mind. When reading to a child, you can mention that abuse sometimes involves a family member such as a parent, grandparent, cousin, or sibling.
Please Tell a Child’s Story About Sexual Abuse (Jessie)
This is a simple book written by a child who experienced sexual abuse at the age of four by her uncle and grandfather.
I Said No! A Kid-to-Kid Guide to Keeping Private Parts Private (Zack and Kimberly King)
This is an all-encompassing body safety book written from a child’s perspective, with the help of his mother, Kimberly.
My Body Is Private (Linda Walvoord Girard)
This book explores our ability to say “no” to unwanted hugs, tickling, and other forms of touch.
Some Secrets Hurt: A Story of Healing (Linda Kay Garner)
This is a gentle story about being able to come forward with a secret of abuse.
Tootles the Turtle Tells the Truth: An Interactive Tale about Secrets (Lenell Levy Melancon)
This book is an interactive tool to help children expose any burdensome secret, including bullying, abuse, or telling a fib. Tootles lends itself to any type of secret that could possibly cause a child emotional discomfort.
Body Safety Education: A Parent’s Guide to Protecting Kids From Sexual Abuse (Jayneedn Sanders)
This book contains practical information to educate yourself and your child about sexual abuse prevention. It explores sexual development and includes lists of helpful books and websites.
30 Days of Sex Talks (Educate Empower Kids)
This is a series of three books broken down into age groups: 3-7, 8-11 and 12+ and contains a book on How to Talk to your Kids About Pornography. This series was written for families to read and discuss the chapters one by one. It creates a safe environment for kids to ask questions or state their concerns.
SAFE Hearts Books (Damsel In Defense)
This series of books (available online through a Damsel In Defense representative) includes a story of sibling incest. It includes a Proactive Parent Guide and guides readers in 12 essential family safety conversations.
The following podcast series explore topics related to incest, child sexual abuse, and recovery. For a complete list of podcasts pertaining to sexual violence, visit the Sexual Assault Advocacy Network’s podcast page.
Catriona Morton talks to fellow survivors of sexual assault and abuse about what happened to them and how they cope now.
Beyond Surviving is a safe space for survivors of childhood sexual abuse to receive support, resources, and share their stories. Beyond Surviving is about freedom, healing, connection, and even laughter and fun. Most importantly, it's about letting go of the pain of abuse and finally moving on!
Pennie Saum is the author of Brave and Unbroken, and a speaker, advocate, law changer, and voice seeker who has dedicated her life to help victims use their voice to move through trauma and grief. She has a passion for helping child sexual abuse victims become thrivers. Pennie is determined to impact those who are struggling the trauma of child sexual abuse. The podcast highlights survivors of child sexual abuse, rape, sexual assault and so forth that have decided to share their stories.
This podcast series seeks to de-shame the victims of incest abuse, sexual abuse, and childhood family trauma - the survival, healing, and thriving.
The #SiblingsToo project encourages people to anonymously share their story. The honesty of the abused person, the abusive person, or other family members will speak volumes to the rest of society and help researchers and experts understand more about the prevalence and impacts of SSA.
As host of the podcast, father-daughter incest survivor Nancy Allen hopes to help create a world where incest survivors have a different life experience than she did. She wants to champion others to say “I am an incest survivor” without shame, guilt, or fear of repercussions, and to open a dialogue which removes the societal taboo of acknowledging and discussing incest. Each podcast episode focuses on a specific topic interpreted through a featured incest survivor’s personal story and, where needed, further explored by experts.
Trauma Queen is a podcast mini-series focused on normalizing the conversation around sexual assault and other traumas. Hosted by Jimanekia Eborn, Queer Media Consultant, Comprehensive Sex Educator, and Sexual Assault and Trauma Expert. Jimanekia will be talking with survivors, therapists, partners, educators, and experts. Real conversations with real people. Each episode will highlight active and productive steps forward as well as three new resources for survivors and allies.
The Voices of Resilience podcast has been set up to support, give hope, and provide real stories of resilience and trauma from the host and others from the effects of childhood sexual abuse. This podcast also provides research and information. This podcast provides a space for people of all genders, diversities and backgrounds to share and listen to the lived experiences of resilience and posttraumatic growth from the effects of childhood sexual abuse.
If you are interested in reading survivor stories, one option to try is Writing Honestly Stories. This is a collection of stories written by an activist “as a way to share my experiences as a millennial woman trying to live my....life while contending with my experiences as a survivor of child sexual abuse. I wanted to create a space to speak about healing from trauma in an honest, funny and compassionate way that didn't feel so...scary.”